Overnight, companies were forced to change, adapt and find their ‘new normal’ in a world of no-contact delivery and hand sanitizer. A month ago, I didn’t know what social distancing was and I wasn’t a pro at eyeballing six feet from the nearest human. Our restaurant doors weren’t propped open to avoid touching the handles and our grocery stores didn’t have employees dedicated to thoroughly disinfecting each basket and cart. Employees weren’t building offices on top of their dining room tables and juggling teaching math and completing eight full hours on the clock. While we have models that can predict theoretical arcs and paths, we don’t have a date that our world will go back to normal. So today, this is our new normal.
What does that mean for our digital presence? When can our new normal include our old content? Our clients have spent weeks in the throes of crisis mode. Carefully treading through being sensitive to the ongoing pandemic while finding ways to avoid shutting their front doors and laying off their employees. We’ve gotten a lot of questions about when it’s okay to push out normal content and, unfortunately, we don’t have an answer for that – but we do have a few suggestions for finding your new normal.
Being positive is not being insensitive
Being quirky and uplifting is not insensitive, in fact, it might just be the break in the feed that we all need. Find a reason to celebrate — whether it’s your customers or staff or even just that the week is finally over. We all need something to smile about.
Social distancing can still be social
Obviously, we’re not encouraging in-person social activities, but we are suggesting that you get creative with ways to put a face on your brand and bring your consumer in. Whether that’s going live or a behind-the-scenes look at your staff pulling off the impossible, putting a face on the brand adds the personal interaction back into an otherwise isolating situation.
Customer service makes all the difference
Right now, customers are going out of their way to support their favorite brands and organizations during a time when companies are struggling. Make it easy for them by sending out clear, concise and consistent messaging. Have your hours changed? Is your menu limited? Are you offering delivery through a new service or have you changed the way you reach your customers? These are all things you need to be communicating regularly.
Lean into your mission
Dig deep to the heart of your organization. What drives you? Find it and lean into it and share it with your audience. This mission is what builds your customers’ loyalty and what keeps your team going when the hours get long. Now, more than ever, you need to let your mission steer your organization’s next steps.
And finally, I’ll leave you with two more tips: not every brand needs to be on TikTok (trust us) and you don’t need to send out an email to thousands of people promising that you wash your hands.
If you need help finding your new normal, we’re always here (well, ‘here’ being our kitchen-table-desks more than six feet away from others): Elizabeth.Yarborough@ChernoffNewman.com